A group of students at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) has introduced what they call a cashless microfinance system to support farmers.
The system is facilitated by a device known as the Barter Trade Meter or ‘BT Meter’ that confirms weight and prices of farm produce according to market trends.
The invention was unveiled at a recently- held engineering students design competition in Kumasi, the Ashanti Region capital.
The prototype device consists of a produce-hanging spring which pulls a meter on a square metal case to a corresponding price.
Group leader, David Daana, explains the machine’s calibration is based on the National Food Buffer Stock Company’s (NAFCO) pricing.
The same group developed an App, Farm Hand App, two years ago, for marketing agricultural produce.
Mr. Daana says the machine, which is powered mechanically, is easily accessible to rural farmers and can help farmers price their produce effectively.
“If your produce is worth 100 cedis and the fertilizer is 100 cedis instead of selling your produce before you get your fertilizer, you can bring us the produce and we’ll get you the fertilizer,” he said.